President Obama Signs Bill Lifting Federal Borrowing Limit through May


President Obama Tuesday signed a measure suspending the federal debt ceiling through May 18th, delaying what is expected to be another intense debate. The bill also included a “No Budget No Pay” provision to encourage members of Congress to pass a budget on time this year.

The bill originated in the House two weeks ago as it became clear to legislators that another political spectacle over the federal borrowing limit was not in their political interests. Instead, they reasoned, focusing on passing a budget and avoiding rapidly-arriving sequestration cuts would be the preferred path forward. The Senate followed suit just one week later.

To ensure that something is done on the Fiscal Year 2014 budget, the No Budget No Pay provision was included to prohibit payment of elected officials unless a budget agreement is reached by April 15th. If a budget is not realized by that date, members’ salaries will be held in escrow until they do. If they still fail to pass a budget agreement by year’s end, their salaries will resume as normal.

For more information on the debt-ceiling and sequestration, and how they will impact the federal workforce, read our handy Federal Employees Guide to Sequestration and the Debt Ceiling.